A third visit to the Midlands in as many weeks allowed Sunderland to kick of their 2012/13 League Cup campaign. Derby opted for a lone striker setting up as 4-5-1 and from the outset took the game to Sunderland. In what proved to be a testing half for Sunderland they didn’t close down Derby quick enough and allowed them to control the game for large periods in the opening 30 mins.


The sustained pressure from Derby continued and a ball through in behind to the edge of the penalty area resulted in a collision between Lyndsey Bell and Katie Luther which allowed the Derby centre forward an opening to goal to make it 1-0.  


A quick counter attack from Sunderland that started with a great pass from Abbey Joice found Jordan Atkinson in space on the right flank. She drove inwards to the goal and levelled the score with a well taken shot. Five minutes later Sunderland failed to clear their lines on the edge of the penalty area and a strike from Derby into the top corner made it 2-1 to Derby, a score-line that the home side well deserved.


HT: Derby County 2   Sunderland 1


The half time team talk must have worked as the second half started better, with Sunderland pressing quicker and dealing with the Derby threat in a much more focused manner. This was evident as the ball was regained in midfield allowing Laura Hockaday to get a strike in on goal which the Derby keeper spilled into the net levelling the score.


Jordan Atkinson continued to cause problems down the right flank and a shot come cross from a wide area found its way into the net to make it 3-2 to Sunderland after 57 mins. As the game progressed Derby’s right flank were subject to sustained pressure and a cross from Jordan Atkinson found Jane Riddell at the back post who headed back into goal for a well placed header from Erin Middleton.


The final 20 mins saw Sunderland step up their passing game. Nicola Devine and Laura Hockaday both had efforts rebound off the woodwork as Sunderland increased the pressure on the Derby goal. On the 81st minute Abbey Joice threaded a great ball into space for Erin Middleton to collect and run in onto goal where she slotted the ball home to claim her second goal of the game.


FT:  Derby County 2   Sunderland 5


Reserve Team Manager, Gary Mitchinson said “I was very disappointed with the team performance in the first half. The second half was better and for 15mins towards the end of the game we played to the standard we can. It’s a timely reminder that you have to earn the right to win games and that right is earned by your performance as a team. In terms of positives, we did just enough to get the job done today”.


Sunderland: Luther, Beer (60, Ryan), Bell, Venison, Devine, Atkinson, Joice, Riddell, Proud (65, Olley), Middleton, Hockaday.  Subs: Ryan, Olley


Scorers: Atkinson (40,57), Middleton (66,81), Hockaday (52)


Reporter: Roy Chinnigstam

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Sunderland Women’s Reserves travelled to Derby in the first round of the League Cup. An under par performance saw the Wearsiders make hard work of a diligent Derby who made life difficult for Sunderland, especially in the first half. A better second half allowed Sunderland to progress into the 2nd Round of the League Cup with a 5-2 win, but it was by no means as easy as the result suggests.

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1 Oct 2012
Just enough to get the job done
Sunderland Reserves progress into the second round of the League Cup